ARJUN REDDY has broken all barriers of conventions in Telugu films. Certain elements of this film — the audacious use of drugs, the living relationship between the protagonists, public display of affection and the utter disregard for the usual norms of the society such as the institution of marriage — remorselessly offend the sensibilities of all orthodox movie goers. If you intend to watch this movie with elderly folks, please come to terms with the fact that there is no flavor of Hajmola in the market to let them digest this content. Also, please be aware that you will be an utterly irresponsible adult if you get kids to watch this film. The film is ‘A’ rated and is meant for audience above 18 years of age but I would personally raise the bar as high as 21 years considering the fact that we live in a society where heroes are worshiped liked demigods. Unsuspecting teens high on testosterone and adrenaline are susceptible to be coaxed to draw inspiration from such characters. The film has its flaws and in many places the line of minimum courtesy, ethics and morality has been conveniently crossed by the protagonist. For instance, as a borderline chauvinist, his total disregard for the female’s consent in relationship or his requests for weird favors from his female friends to fill the void in his life seems both shocking and selfish. The protagonist’s character is a controversial mix of right and wrong and he is so brilliantly portrayed on screen that the line between good and bad seems so blurred and almost inexistent to the audience who fall in love with the character. Considering all these details, it is essential that you don’t leave your brain at home before stepping in to watch this film.
Technically, the film is path breaking and disruptive. It does not adhere to any of the routine formulae of Telugu films and the ones seeking variety in can breathe some fresh air. Like the character of Arjun Reddy, the film is rebellious and breaks all taboos. It captivates the audience with its free spirited and fearless story telling. The background score is a blemish-less alloy of butt kicking sounds and magnifies the impact of the scenes on screen so much that you can feel the hormonal rush. All songs blend into the movie so well that you won’t remember watching a song.
Vijay Devarakonda has done a magnificent job all the way through the film. The hippie like look from Yevade Subramanyam with long wavy hair and flowing beard has been retained and modishly groomed in this film and appeals to the audience. The devil-may-care attitude, rawness and rage in Arjun’s character envisaged by the director has been portrayed exceptionally well on screen and doesn’t fail to leave an impression. The female protagonist on the other hand looks like any other sane and normal person on this planet. Thankfully, the director’s focus is entirely on her role and no attempt has been made to exaggerate beauty to meet the otherwise ridiculous barbie-doll standards of the film industry. The character that plays the role of hero’s friend needs a special mention. He evokes a lot of laughter with his fluent punches in Telangana slang and also exemplifies true friendship by helping his friend through thick and thin. The first half has all the guns blazing and doesn’t disappoint while the pathos of the second half might mildly drown you in boredom if you are not mentally prepared or not in the right mood. All in all, the film is a decent watch, it feels stylish and ultra modern akin to a hollywood flick. It gives hope for diversification of stories in Telugu cinema and will be remembered as an undaunted experiment. However, as mentioned before, no matter how trendy the film or its protagonist is, it is best for the audience, even more so for the gullible ones who tend to get influenced, to simply enjoy the film as a well told story without losing their judgement of right and wrong.